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Press Release

Jonathan Potts

For immediate release:
January 15, 2003

The dream lives on through the winners of Carnegie Mellon Universityıs Martin Luther King Jr. Day Writing Awards

PITTSBURGH—He died years before they were born, but Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s spirit lives on in the hearts of the winners of the fourth annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Writing Awards at Carnegie Mellon University.

About 100 students from Pittsburgh-area high schools and Carnegie Mellon submitted essays or poetry reflecting on the role race has played in their lives. At 1:30 p.m. Jan. 20, the winners, with their families in tow, will read their work at Rangos Hall in the University Center at Carnegie Mellon. Winners also receive cash prizes.

The event follows Carnegie Mellon President Jared Cohon's annual state of diversity address, and it is one of the highlights of the university's celebration of King's life. The awards are sponsored by the university's Creative Writing program, which is part of the Department of English in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

"We want people to carry this away and continue to think about these issues," said Jim Daniels, director of the Creative Writing program and professor of English at Carnegie Mellon. Daniels conceived the idea for the writing awards several years ago.

A co-sponsor of the awards this year is the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, which is contributing some of the prize money and is giving the winners free tickets to Black History Month events at the library.

During a reception at 7 p.m. Feb. 27 at the library's main branch in Oakland, the high school winners will read their work. The reception will mark the closing of a month-long exhibit of artwork by students involved in programs at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild on the North Side.

A list of the winners follows. First place winners receive $100; second place, $75; third place, $50; and honorable mention, $25.

High school prose
First place: Jamar Thrasher, Pittsburgh High School for the Creative and Performing Arts (CAPA)
Second place: Lauren Kelley-Chew, the Ellis School
Third place: Clay Pennington, Sewickley Academy
Honorable mention:
Katheryn Artz, Peabody High School
Marshall Slayton, CAPA
Heather Crawford, Pine-Richland High School

High school poetry
First place: Shade L. Mallory, CAPA
Second place: Gillian Goldberg, CAPA
Third place: Amanda Burk, Pine-Richland High School
Honorable mention:
Zachary Harris, CAPA
Claire Schoyer, CAPA
Amanda Huminski, CAPA

Carnegie Mellon prose
First place: Joseph Maliekel
Second place: Elsie Lampl
Third place: Virginia Ngai
Honorable mention:
Brian Martin Schenker
Elizabeth Weiss

Carnegie Mellon poetry:
First place: Emily Green
Second place: Kevin Gonzalez
Third place: Christina Maria Acosta
Honorable mention:
Justin Ker
Eliza Bishop
Peter Borrebach


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